Carbon Trust doubles SME loans
by David Masters
October 13, 2008
The Carbon Trust has doubled the maximum interest free loan available to small businesses investing in energy efficient equipment.
The government funded independent company said the decision was made to help SMEs install even more ambitious energy saving measures.
Previously businesses could apply for a maximum interest free loan of £100,000 towards projects to reduce their carbon footprint.
The credit crunch, however, has got the Carbon Trust thinking, and to help businesses through these difficult financial times where credit is hard to come by and energy costs are rising, the Trust has decided to increase the maximum loan available to £200,000.
Hugh Jones, solutions director at the Carbon Trust, said his company was aware that the £100,000 limit made it difficult for businesses who wanted to implement big energy saving changes.
In addition, current market conditions have made it more difficult for small businesses to secure funding from elsewhere, Jones said.
Total loan money available has also increased, up 45% to £31 million.
To qualify for a loan, businesses must have less than 250 employees, at least 12 months trading history, and a good credit rating.
The size of the loan depends on how much money will be saved from reduced energy costs as a result of the investment.
No security is required for the loans, which have to be repaid within four years.
SMEs in England, Scotland and Wales can apply for the loans, whilst businesses in Northern Ireland could be eligible for loans of up to £400,000.
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